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Smart Phones and Churches

August 13, 2010

I had this crazy thought running around in my head this morning regarding Smart Phones and Church Government.  Blackberry, Android Phones, and iPhones are in full swing of competing for consumer’s dollars.  They each have drastically different approaches.

Blackberry has rocked the market up until recently by targeting businesses and business minded people.  They did email and did it well.  However, they have been in decline recently as the other two big boys on the block are beginning to do what blackberry does well in addition to reaching out to other people outside of the business world.  Blackberry just released a new phone to hopefully to stay in step with the others and begin to explore new areas for them.

Apple has marked out it’s territory with gorgeous devices, beautiful software, and ease of use.  They have capitalized on a visual and entertainment driven culture by providing a powerful and easily accessible music and video device.  They aggressively incorporated social networking into the palms of people’s hands providing community where ever they go.  By providing tight control of their devices, applications, and software they provide a very polished experience.

Google has marched onto the scene with a very open hand, inviting all to participate in the growth process by focusing on open source software and consumer app development.  They too have embraced the social networking boom and have allowed consumers to have a strong voice in the process.  Android devices are not as slick as iPhone’s in some respects, but are free from many of the proprietary controls Apple maintains.  Google is seeking to provide an organic experience for users where they feel they are owners not participators.

Does this sound like any churches you have attended?  It did to me in some ways.  Some churches are struggling under an old model of ministry that doesn’t quite fit in an evolving culture and find themselves in decline and trying to catch back up.  Others have built strong and talented ministry teams that produce incredible experiences for their attenders and maintain a tight control of the ministry process.  Still others have taken a more organic approach in these modern times, tailoring the ministry to fit changing cultures and also allowing more involvement in the process by the attenders.

I certainly find strengths and weaknesses in all three.  Certain things frighten me (Like comparing churches to cell phones), while others excite me.  I know that there is definitely no cookie cutter method to church structure.

I just thought there were some interesting correlations!  Why don’t you guys fill me in on your thoughts on this and what other things do you see?

I own a Droid Incredible by the way . . . and love it.

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From → Faith, Thoughts

7 Comments
  1. Jeffery permalink

    I have iPhone too… I think that from a leadership standpoint… The “iPhone” is a good approach. I mean, like perry noble said in one message.. The captain of a plane doesn’t ask his passengers how to fly… In general… I don’t know how to make a phone.. Just have opinions and some of them may be mis-informed even.. I think a lot of people in church want to do things according to their mis-informedy instead of following a God appointed and maintained operating system… Not to compare apple to God or anything. 🙂

    • Great thoughts gang! Re-evaluation done prayerfully is always a good thing. However, I wasn’t trying to say any one of them is completely right or wrong, just making some observations. I personally am excited about the iPhone coming to Verizon at some point just for music reasons. As far as church goes, I think a targeted, excellent, well led, organic is in the ball park. In other words, the best of each … keep those thoughts coming!

  2. Megan permalink

    I have an iPhone… I’m concerned what this may say about my approach to ministry 😦 It’s time for some self evaluation!

    • Megan, I don’t think it says anything about your approach to ministry, but it does say that you are on AT&T and have good taste in phones. But asking and praying through questions about following God and serving people is a good thing!

  3. I listened to a sermon earlier today on the radio discussing this very topic and how the new focus is to stream church in a way to appeal to the new times without watering down the message of the Gospel. I think the church has to always adapt to the times and still stay true to God’s word and his original message.

    The sermon put it like this, if we were in a service speaking Hebrew in Delaware, it is very unlikely that the people there will understand it, or at least not that many. We speak English because that is the language of the people. Adapting services to the language of the people still gets the same message across as long as we keep it Biblical.

    Just my thoughts.

  4. 5minutes permalink

    You know, it’s easier just to go Presbyterian. In fact, here’s a picture of the Presbyterian Cell Phone in action…

    • There was recently an article at CNN.com about that guy. He’s the inventor of the first commercially available cell phone. It sold for like 10,000 dollars.

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